London Borough of Waltham Forest
—  London borough  —
Coat of arms of London Borough of Waltham Forest
Coat of arms
Official logo of London Borough of Waltham Forest
Council logo
Waltham Forest shown within Greater London
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Constituent country England
Region London
Ceremonial county Greater London
Status London borough
Admin HQ Walthamstow
Incorporated 1 April 1965
 • Type London borough council
 • Body Waltham Forest London Borough Council
 • Leadership Leader & Cabinet (Labour)
 • Mayor Cllr Nadeem Ali[1]
 • MPs John Cryer
Stella Creasy
Iain Duncan Smith
 • London Assembly Jennette Arnold AM for North East
 • EU Parliament London
 • Total 14.99 sq mi (38.82 km2)
Area rank 295th (of 326)
Population (2006 est.)
 • Total 259,700
 • Rank 48th (of 326)
 • Ethnicity[2] 53.5% White British
2.1% White Irish
7.6% Other White
1.4% White & Black Caribbean
0.7% White & Black African
0.9% White & Asian
1.0% Other Mixed
3.7% Indian
7.7% Pakistani
1.2% Bangladeshi
2.3% Other Asian
7.7% Black Caribbean
6.4% Black African
1.4% Other Black
0.9% Chinese
1.5% Other
Time zone GMT (UTC0)
 • Summer (DST) BST (UTC+1)
Postcodes E , IG
Area code(s) 020
Police force Metropolitan Police

The London Borough of Waltham Forest is a London borough in NE London, England. The south of the borough contrasts markedly with the north (split by the North Circular Road) in terms of its mixed ethnicity and socio-economic indicators, and is often regarded as part of London's East End (along with nearby Clapton, Stratford and Forest Gate). Taken as a whole, Waltham Forest comprises built-up urban districts in the south with inner-city characteristics, and more affluent residential development in the north with a variety of reservoirs, open space, small sections of Epping Forest, parks, and playing fields, which together cover a fifth of the borough. It is located between Epping Forest District Council in the north, London Borough of Redbridge in the east, London Boroughs of Newham and Hackney in the south, and London Boroughs of Haringey and Enfield in the west (where the River Lea and the surrounding parkland forms a green corridor, traditionally separating north and east London). Waltham Forest was one of the six London boroughs that hosted the 2012 Summer Olympics. The local authority is Waltham Forest London Borough Council.


Many Stone Age remains are found in the area. Roman remains have also been found scattered around the borough proving it was a significant area of Roman occupation. The borough was formed in 1965, by the London Government Act 1963, from the combined areas of the former Municipal Borough of Chingford, Municipal Borough of Leyton and Municipal Borough of Walthamstow, which were all transferred to Greater London from the English county of Essex. The borough was named after the ancient form of Epping Forest, the southern part of which extends into the borough.There was a petition against calling the new borough "Walthamstow". The Epping Forest Act of 1878 not only assisted in preserving the forest but also helped develop the towns around it: Chingford, Forest Gate, Walthamstow, Leytonstone, and Leyton. The area's location between the City of London and Epping Forest encouraged large scale urban development.


The main centres of population in the borough are Chingford in the north, Walthamstow in the centre (and the administrative hub including the council offices) and Leyton and Leytonstone to the South. Waltham Forest has the fifth largest Muslim population in England and the third largest in London (coming after its neighbouring boroughs, Newham and Tower Hamlets).

Arts, culture and leisure[]

Historically known as the seat of the Arts and Crafts Movement under the stewardship of William Morris, Waltham Forest has continued to succour many contemporary artists & art groups. These include the North East London Independent Artists (NELIA) group, based at the Changing Room Gallery in Lloyd Park, the 491 Gallery in Leytonstone, and a number of independent artists, also mainly in the Leytonstone area. The annual E17 Art Trail, which includes open studios, exhibitions and events, is the biggest art event in the borough, and there is now a similar event in Leytonstone. Eamon Everall, founder member of the Stuckism art movement is a long-time resident in the borough where he also maintains a studio.[3]

Waltham Forest is home to a number of musicians that have found success in the UK, including East 17, Blazin' Squad, and Indie band Hefner, who formed in Walthamstow. The borough is also a centre of the grime musical genre; grime acts hailing from the borough include More Fire Crew, Lethal Bizzle, and Jammer amongst others.

The only theatre in the borough, The Waltham Forest Theatre, was situated in Lloyds Park. Though a local campaign was launched to save it in 2008 [4] the theatre was demolished in 2011.

Waltham Forest is one of two London boroughs (the other being Lewisham) to not have a cinema within its boundaries. The last cinema in the borough (the EMD (Granada) Walthamstow) closed in 2003. The building (built in 1887 and Grade II listed) has been empty and boarded up since.

Leyton Orient F.C. is the local professional football team, based at Brisbane Road, Leyton. In the 1962-63 season the club has played in the top tier of English football, the Football League First Division, but currently are in Football League One, the third tier of the English football league system.


Waltham Forest was one of six local authorities to set up a Housing Action Trust under the Housing Act 1988. The Waltham Forest HAT covered various estates in need of regeneration: Cathall Road in Leytonstone, Oliver Close in Leyton, Boundary Road in Walthamstow and Chingford Hall in Chingford. The HAT transferred its redeveloped estates to Community-based Housing Association and shut down in April 2002. English Partnerships then demolished four empty tower blocks.[5]

The remaining Council housing in the borough is now managed by an arms-length management organisation, Ascham Homes.[6]


Waltham Forest was one of four host boroughs in east London for the 2012 Olympics. The northern part of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is located in Eton Manor. The borough hosted events in its three Olympic-size swimming pools, one synchronised swimming pool and one water polo pool. These pools were used for athlete training.

During the Paralympic Games, Eton Manor hosted the Wheelchair Tennis events, with temporary seating for 10,500 spectators.

In April 2012, the Ministry of Defence identified the roof of Fred Wigg Tower as a potential location for surface-to-air missile defences during the Games.[7]



  • Baker's Arms
  • Cann Hall
  • Chingford
  • Chingford Hatch
  • Friday Hill
  • Hale End
  • Highams Park
  • Leyton
  • Leytonstone
  • Walthamstow
  • Whipps Cross
  • Upper Walthamstow


  • Cann Hall
  • Cathall
  • Chapel End
  • Chingford Green
  • Endlebury
  • Forest
  • Grove Green
  • Hale End and Highams Park
  • Hatch Lane
  • High Street
  • Higham Hill
  • Hoe Street
  • Larkswood
  • Lea Bridge
  • Leyton
  • Leytonstone
  • Markhouse
  • William Morris
  • Wood Street
  • Valley


The Central line of the London Underground serves the south of the borough, running alongside the A12 road with stations at Leyton and Leytonstone. The Victoria Line runs roughly through the middle of the borough with stations at Walthamstow Central and Blackhorse Road. The Gospel Oak to Barking line of London Overground has stations at Walthamstow Queens Road, Blackhorse Road, Leyton Midland Road and Leytonstone High Road. Greater Anglia services from Liverpool Street station in the City of London serve stations at St James Street, Walthamstow Central, Wood Street, Highams Park and Chingford.

London Buses routes 20, 34, 48, 55, 56, 58, 66, 69, 97, 123, 145, 158, 179, 212, 215, 230, 257, 275, 308, 313, 339, 357, 379, 385, 397, 444, W11, W12, W13, W14, W15, W16, W19, School buses route 657, 675, other route 505, 853 and Night route N8, N26, N38, N55, N73 and N205.

Law enforcement[]

Waltham Forest has a Magistrates' Court, located next to the Town Hall; however, it has been announced that this court will close in the near future, due to government cut backs. There are five police stations, in Chingford, Leyton, Leytonstone, Walthamstow and Walthamstow Town Centre, and a number of additional patrol centres throughout the borough.

Notable residents[]

David Beckham

Waltham Forest is the birthplace of William Morris, best known as one of the principal founders of the British Arts and Crafts Movement. Morris was a designer of wallpaper and patterned fabrics, a writer of poetry and fiction, and a pioneer of the socialist movement in Britain.

Other notable people, such as footballer and former England Captain David Beckham, I, Claudius star Derek Jacobi, former Essex and England cricket Captain Graham Gooch, and the film director and producer Alfred Hitchcock, were also born in the borough. The heavy metal band Iron Maiden was formed in Leyton, and Eastenders actress Rita Simons was born in Leytonstone. The poet Pascale Petit, shortlisted three times for the TS Eliot poetry prize, lives in Walthamstow. Notable Grime Artist Lethal Bizzle is from Walthamstow.

Sport teams[]

  • Leyton Orient Football Club
  • Leyton Football Club
  • Waltham Forest F.C.
  • Lee Valley Lions

Twinned cities[]

The London Borough of Waltham Forest is twinned[8] with:–

  • France Saint-Mandé, France
  • Germany Wandsbeck, Germany

Friendship Links have also been established with:

See also[]

  • Waltham Forest parks and open spaces
  • Whipps Cross Hospital



  1. ^ "The Mayor". London Borough of Waltham Forest. Retrieved 2013-07-04. 
  2. ^ Data Management and Analysis Group, Greater London Authority, Demography Update October 2007, (2007)
  3. ^ "'The Gift', Eamon Everall", Walker Art Gallery, National Museums Liverpool. Retrieved 16 October 2008.
  4. ^ Sarah Cosgrove, "Teenage twins in bid to take over theatre", The Waltham Forest Guardian
  5. ^ English Partnerships: A residuary body for Housing Action Trusts at the Wayback Machine (archived January 5, 2008).
  6. ^ "Ascham Homes performance worsens". Waltham Forest Guardian. 24 May 2010. Archived from the original on 26 May 2010. Retrieved 1 May 2012. 
  7. ^ "Missiles could be deployed at six sites during Olympics, MOD confirm". Daily Telegraph. 1 May 2012. Retrieved 1 May 2012. 
  8. ^

External links[]

Template:LB Waltham Forest

Coordinates: 51°34′N 0°02′W / 51.567, -0.033

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